Scout Basics

The Scout Law:                                           The Scout Promise:

A Scout is                                                                 On my honour:
helpful and trustworthy,                                         I promise that I will do my best;
kind and cheerful,                                                   To do my duty to God and the Queen;
considerate and clean, and                                    To help other people at all times, and
wise in the use of all resources.                             To carry out the spirit of the Scout Law.  


The Scout Motto:                                         The Scout Slogan:

“Be Prepared”                                                           “Do a good turn daily”

Becoming a Scout:

Our Founder:
Lord Baden-Powell

The rules of Scouting are found in the Promise,
Law, Motto, and Slogan.

New members must understand
these basic rules to become Scouts.

New Scouts need to know, and understand three

1. Scout Promise and Law,
2. Scout Motto and Slogan,
3. Scout Handshake, Salute, and Sign,
and the reasons Scouts use them.

New Scouts also must take part in at least
one Scout activity.

When new members learn and accomplish these
four things, they’re ready to be invested as Scouts.



Traditions in any organization give it uniqueness,
mystery and strength.  Some of today’s Scout traditions
are based on B.-P.’s experiences as a military
officer and his service in South Africa.  Tradition is
a present-day link to the past and a way for our
members to identify with others in the Movement.
Scouting has three basic traditions: the Scout
Salute, the Scout Sign, and the Scout Handshake.

The Scout Salute:

The Saluting Scout.
2,000 ft. up on the 1st Peak
of the Stawamus Chief.
October 29, 2011

Hold together the three middle fingers of the right
hand and touch together the thumb and little finger.

With palm facing the front, bring up the hand
smartly to the head until the forefinger touches
the forehead.  Bring down the hand to the side.

Sea Scouts use the same hand position, but
salute with the palm down.

Make the Scout Salute only when in full uniform.

It’s a sign of respect, courtesy and friendliness.

The Scout Sign:

The right hand position is the same as for the
salute: three fingers up, thumb and little finger
touching, and palm out.  Begin as with the salute,
but hold the hand straight up beside the head.

The three upright fingers represent the three
parts of the Scout Promise: doing your best; doing
your duty to God, Queen, and other people; and
carrying out the spirit of the Scout Law.  The
thumb and little finger meet to represent

Scouting’s ties in friendship.

Scouts use the Scout Sign:

• at all investiture ceremonies,
• any time the Promise is recited, and
• when out of uniform.

The Scout Handshake:

Venturer giving the Scout left hand shake. Lillihammer, Norway.
1975 World Scouting Jamboree.

Scouts shake with the
left hand as a sign of brotherhood
and trust.  B.-P. took the idea
from an African story about two feuding
tribes whose raids and battles were destroying
both communities.

During a futile confrontation between warriors
equally matched in battle skills and bravery, one
of the chiefs spotted the other. Signalling his warriors
to stay behind, he dropped his weapon and
walked toward the rival chief.  As he approached,
he also dropped the shield that protected his heart
from enemy spears.  He then held out his now free
left hand to his rival as a sign of friendship and
trust.  The gesture brought together the tribes for
talks; it helped to end the wars between them.

Some troops also develop unique traditions arising
from events experienced by their members.

Wisely used, traditions based on good taste and
Scouting’s Principles can strengthen the ties that
bind the troop or patrol together.


“It’s good to have an end to journey toward; but it is the journey that matters, in the end.”

 — Ursula K. Le Guin


Scouting Basics Resources:

The Baden-Powell Story (old-fashioned graphic novel format):     The Baden-Powell Story

The Scout Law & Promise (pocket-size):                                       The Scout Law & Promise

Scout Badge Requirements (Log-in to our page here):                  Scouts-Badges Website

Scouting Internet Resources:

Scouts Canada Main Wiki Page:         

Scouts Canada “Scouts” Wiki Page:   


Scout Simon (after being made an honourary Maasai Warrior in recognition of his climb of Kilimanjaro) shakes hands with the Scout left handshake.  The Maasai recognize the left handshake and name of the founder of Scouting in the birthplace of Scouting: Africa.

Scout Simon (after being made an honourary Maasai Warrior in recognition of his climb of Kilimanjaro) shakes hands with the Scout left handshake. The Maasai recognize the significance of the left handshake and the name of the founder, Baden-Powell, in the birthplace of Scouting: Africa.


“When you stop doing things for fun you might as well be dead.”

— Hemingway


Food for Thought….

Jordan Romero

Photograph by Team Romero, AP

Feat:  Reaching the summit of Everest at 13, becoming the youngest to stand atop the rooftop of the world

On May 22, 2010, 13-year-old American Jordan Romero stepped onto the 29,029-foot (8,848-meter) summit of Mount Everest, becoming the youngest person to reach the highest point on the planet. Climbing from the north side of the mountain, he became an inspiration for young and old alike, but for the kid from California it was just one more step toward his ultimate goal: to become the youngest to climb the highest mountain on each of the seven continents, collectively known as the Seven Summits. This fall, Romero will travel to Antarctica to complete his quest by climbing the 16,050-foot (4,892-meter) Vinson Massif.

Credit:  National Geographic

Update:  Upon summiting the Vinson Massif in Antarctica in December, 2011, Jordan succeeded in his goal to be the youngest person to climb the “Seven Summits”.  Well, done Jordan!


-21° C, Lower Joffre Lake
Joffre Lake Provincial Park. November 20, 2011.


More to come…

  1. CONGRATULATION! I’m a mountain guide but I have never had about you! SCOUTS? BE PREPAIRED!!

    • Thanks William.

      Yes, we are Scouts! If all goes well, some of us will come see you next summer (2013).
      Apparently, you have a little hill there that’s worth hiking up. ;^)

      NOTE: William is a mountain guide for Mount Kilimanjaro, Tanzania. How cool is that?

  2. May I ask how long the Mountaineer Scouts have existed?

    • Samuel:
      We resurrected a dead Scout Group (5th West Vancouver Scouts) in September of 2011 and re-branded it as Canada’s (and the world’s?) first dedicated Mountaineer Scout Group. We’ve been having fun mountain adventures ever since. Climb high!

  3. I was in regular scouts in elementary school and your group would have been so much more awesome had it existed back in 1995-1997.

  4. do u let girls in scouts in Canada

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